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Tag: Fox News

The Racism Is the Point

By David Corn  February 24, 2024

It’s Black History Month. Could that be why right-wing racism seems to be on the rise?

I’m not sure how you measure it, but there seems to be a pronounced uptick in overt racism within conservative ranks of late. And it goes beyond the egregious conduct of former President Donald Trump. The onetime reality TV celebrity has a long record of racism that stretches from the discriminatory housing practices engaged in by his family business (1960s) to his racist attack on the wrongly convicted Central Park Five (1980s) to his championing of the racist birther theory (2010s). At a town hall in New Hampshire during the 2016 campaign, a man in the audience yelled, “We have a problem in this country; it’s called Muslims…When can we get rid of them?” Affirming this burst of bigotry, Trump replied, “We’re going to be looking at a lot of different things. You know, a lot of people are saying that, and a lot of people are saying that bad things are happening out there.” And when candidate Trump attacked Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is Mexican American and who was overseeing the Trump University fraud case (remember that one?), even GOP House Speaker Paul Ryan felt compelled to call his remarks “racist.”

Yet Trump’s racism—like so much of his outrageous behavior—never became a decisive issue in the 2016 campaign, and it did not abate during his presidency. There was the Muslim ban. He referred to a group of protesters that included white nationalists and Nazis as “very fine people.” He called African nations “shithole countries.” In the 2020 race, he repeatedly claimed that Joe Biden was teaming up with Black radicals (and commies and Antifa and the media) to assault suburban communities (obviously white suburban communities). We don’t have time to go through a full rundown. Do you want a list of Trump’s racist episodes? Here’s one.

And it only seems to be getting worse. In recent months, Trump has hurled racist attacks at Black officials who are prosecuting cases against him. He has derided Nikki Haley in a racist manner. He has used racist and Hitler-like rhetoric to slam undocumented migrants.

Setting an example with this torrent of hatred, Trump has thrown the door open to denizens of MAGA-land who wish to express their inner racism. Meanwhile, leading strategists of the right, including Chris Rufo and failed wannabe president Ron DeSantis, have launched a war on “wokeness” and diversity, equity, and inclusion programs at schools and businesses, a crusade that jibes nicely with Trump’s explicit racism. It’s hard to believe there’s no connection between these strategic initiatives and Trump’s legitimizing of racism.

As bad as this recent history has been, it appears that voices on the right are going further. Look at Fox pundit Raymond Arroyo. Days ago on that network, he declared Black Americans will back Trump in the coming election because…they love sneakers. Yes, he said that. This was his insight following Trump’s recent announcement that he’s selling a limited line of Trump-inspired (and incredibly gaudy and ugly) sneakers at $399 a pair. Arroyo opined:

As you see Black support eroding from Joe Biden, this is connecting with Black America because they love sneakers. They love sneakers. This is a big deal. Certainly, in the inner city. So, when you have Trump roll out his sneaker line, they’re like, “Wait a minute. This is cool.” He’s reaching them on a level that defies and is above politics.

 

Selling a thousand pairs of ridiculous sneakers will win over Black voters? Tough to be more dismissive, cynical, or…racist than that. When the host asked if “people who are excited about the sneakers” would vote for Trump, Arroyo replied, “Anybody willing to put 400 bucks down for a pair of sneakers—yeah, I think that’s commitment and love.” Arroyo trotted out racial stereotypes, and his Fox interlocutor was fine with that.

On the MAGA right, there’s been a race to a racist bottom, with leading figures seemingly trying to outdo each other. At the front of this pack is Charlie Kirk, the Trump fanboy who heads Turning Point USA. He has declared that he would be nervous if he saw a Black pilot in the cockpit of a plane. As if this captain’s only qualification was checking a box for a DEI initiative. (To be clear, all pilots need to pass the same tests to be certified to fly.) He also noted, “If I’m dealing with someone in customer service who’s a moronic Black woman, I wonder: Is she there because of her excellence or is she there because of affirmative action?”

Floyd Brown, a veteran far-right activist (who was behind the infamously racist Willie Horton ad that ran during the 1988 campaign) and is now campaign manager for Kari Lake’s Senate campaign in Arizona, said something similar about a Black doctor. “Yet now because of DEI, when you see a Black surgeon, you get a question in your mind.” You do?

Kirk has always been an alt-right twerp, but it’s noteworthy that he now has delved into the realm of white supremacy. My colleague Ali Breland did a deep dive on his descent and observed:

Kirk appears to have shifted, embracing racist and white nationalist rhetoric and figures with little hesitation. In the past year, he’s hosted far-right and white supremacist figures on his podcast and has tweeted in support of whiteness, earning praise from white supremacists who have long campaigned to mainstream such rhetoric.

In October, he invited veteran white supremacist Steve Sailer, whose bona fides include writing for overt white nationalist publications including VDare and the Unz Review, on his podcast. During their interview, Kirk called Sailer his favorite “noticer”—a word frequently used in internet conservative spaces as a euphemism for individuals willing to publicly draw bigoted conclusions linking race and criminality. Sailer did exactly this during their conversation, insinuating that Black people commit crimes because of innate characteristics: “Blacks tend to commit murder about 10 times as often per capita as whites…it’s not just all explained by poverty.”

Breland also reported, “Others associated with Turning Point USA are also giving voice to white supremacist positions. In a tweet last week, right-wing internet figure Jack Posobiec, a TPUSA contributor with a history of ties to white nationalists, slammed Nikki Haley’s financial backers as ‘rootless cosmopolitans,’ an established antisemitic euphemism.” (Posobiec was one of the chief spreaders of the violence-inciting Pizzagate conspiracy theory.)

These folks might seem to be marginal figures, but as influencers on the right, they reflect what appears to be a greater willingness generally to openly voice racist sentiments. Axios reported that at a Turning Point USA conference in December, the “emphasis on Haley’s nonwhite heritage was hard to miss.”

Racism and white grievance are everywhere on Planet MAGA these days. A broadcast of Sean Hannity’s Fox show earlier this month featured a live segment in which members of the Guardian Angels, a supposedly anti-crime patrol group, assaulted a man in Times Square who they claimed was a “migrant.” As this was transpiring, their leader Curtis Sliwa exclaimed, “They’ve taken over.” Nope. Their victim was from the Bronx. Here was racist violence shown live on television. It was right out of Network.

By the way, the New York Post expressed outrage that a Google AI chatbot generated a picture of a Black founding father:

 

Okay, George Washington was not Black. But why go nuts over this and put it on the front page? While we’re at it, Jesus probably did not resemble a white European, as he has often been depicted. (He certainly didn’t look like this.)

Slavery had benefits. Kamala Harris is an idiot. White people are being replaced by people of color (a conspiracy theory promoted by Tucker Carlson and others on the right). Racist comments are zipping through the conservative cosmos at what appears to be a more furious clip than several years ago. There have long been statistics about hate crimes, and in 2023 they were up by 13 percent. But it’s more difficult to track and quantify the dissemination of racist utterances. I sense there’s an acceleration. (Do you?) And I shudder to think how much worse this could get, especially if the Grand Leader and catalyst of this racism revival returns to the White House.

Loose bolts open door to racism

NTSB Investigator-in-Charge John Lovell examines the fuselage plug area of Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 Boeing 737-9 MAX on January 7, 2024. (Photo by NTSB via Getty Images)

NTSB Investigator-in-Charge John Lovell examines the fuselage plug area of Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 Boeing 737-9 MAX on January 7, 2024. (Photo by NTSB via Getty Images)

 

On January 5th, a Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft operated by Alaska Airlines was forced to make an emergency landing after a door panel flew off mid-air. No deaths were reported, but multiple passengers required medical attention, officials said. The cause of the incident is currently under investigation, but initial reports from the National Transportation Safety Board reveal that four bolts, meant to keep the door panel intact, “were missing or improperly installed.” United Airlines and Alaska Airlines — the only U.S. carriers that use Max 9 aircraft — have said that they’ve found “loose” bolts and hardware on some of their Max 9 planes. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has grounded all Max 9 planes.

As the investigation unfolds, however, far-right pundits and news outlets are ignoring the facts and focusing on theories rooted in racism and sexism.

In a video uploaded to X, right-wing blogger Matt Walsh suggested that “diverse mechanics” employed at Spirit AeroSystems, the company that manufactures the Max 9 door panel, were to blame for the incident. Walsh claimed, without evidence, that incompetent “diverse mechanics” were hired instead of “experienced” mechanics. “DEI is destroying the airline industry, and lots of people will die because of it,” Walsh told his 2.6 million followers. In a different post, Walsh criticizes women engineers at Spirit AeroSystems, saying, “What they lack in skill and engineering capability they make [sic] for in sass!”

Others have also decided to blame the Boeing blowout on diversity policies and, more explicitly, people of color and women. Right-wing commentator Ian Miles Cheong said, “The 737 MAX was put together by a team of ‘diverse’ engineers. Boeing is hiring based on DEI. No surprise that they’re falling apart.” And Wall Street Silver, a popular far-right account, claimed that “DEI is going to result in a crash costing the lives of hundreds of people.”

Elon Musk amplified these claims on X. The tech billionaire promoted a post on “Boeing and DEI” from James Lindsay, a right-wing figure who has peddled “white genocide” conspiracy theories. Musk wrote to his 169.3 million followers, “Do you want to fly in an airplane where they prioritized DEI hiring over your safety? That is actually happening.”

These arguments quickly migrated onto Fox News. “Attention Boeing executives, DEI must die, not passengers on your plane,” Fox Business host Sean Duffy announced. “This is a dangerous business when you’re focused on DEI and maybe less focused on engineering and safety.”

But this narrative has no basis in fact. Both Boeing and its supplier, Spirit AeroSystems, are not particularly diverse. Boeing reports that in 2022, minorities made up 35% of the workforce. At Spirit AeroSystems, minority representation was at 26% in 2022. This number shrinks as you move up the corporate ladder: less than 17% of the managers at Spirit AeroSystems are minorities. At Boeing, the number of minority executives dropped in 2022 compared to 2021. Spirit and Boeing also employ three times more men than women.

The overwhelming majority of C-Suite executives at both companies are white men. Boeing’s CEO, CFO, Chief Compliance Officer, and Chief Aerospace Safety Officer are all white men. Spirit’s CEO, CFO, Chief Administration and Compliance Officer, and Senior VP of Quality are also all white men. None of these people are being held accountable by right-wing pundits for the Boeing incident. Instead, it’s the fault of unknown, non-white Boeing and Spirit employees.

The Max’s troubled history also predates DEI efforts at either of these companies. Following the Max crashes of 2018 and 2019 that killed a total of 346 people, numerous reports have highlighted the flawed design and rollout of the Max, which first flew in 2017. A 2020 House Committee on the Max crashes concluded that “Boeing failed in its design and development of the Max, and the FAA failed in its oversight of Boeing and its certification of the aircraft.” And yet despite all this, somehow diversity policies—which mostly emerged after the 2020 social justice protests—are the culprit.

This isn’t the first time far-right personalities and outlets have resorted to this line of attack. Last year, a Republican lawmaker blamed the Ohio train derailment on Norfolk Southern’s “focus on DEI.” Right-wing media figures also blamed the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank on its “woke” policies. Both claims were swiftly debunked by experts.

While the specific cause is still to be determined, the facts suggest the Boeing incident was related to poor quality control standards, not diversity efforts. Long before the door flew open, workers had alerted their bosses of safety problems — but their warnings went unheeded.

Workers say they faced retaliation for reporting safety concerns

A recent lawsuit alleges that Spirit AeroSystems, Boeing’s aircraft parts maker, concealed “widespread and sustained quality failures.” The lawsuit, which was filed by an investor in 2023, claims that Spirit was “encouraging workers to undercount defects” and “retaliating against those who raised safety concerns,” The Lever reports.

One former Spirit Quality Control Inspector, for example, was instructed by their manager to underreport and misrepresent the number of defects identified. The employee, who had been with Spirit for roughly 12 years, “struggled with Spirit’s culture, which placed an emphasis on pushing out product over quality.” According to the employee, there was an “excessive amount of defects.” But when he raised concerns about falsifying documentation, his supervisor threatened to “fire him on the spot.” The employee ended up being demoted and was only reinstated after submitting an ethics complaint and alerting Tom Gentile, the head of Spirit at the time. According to the lawsuit, following the worker’s departure, many of his former teammates were moved to “different positions, because they tried to find too many defects.”

Joshua Dean, a former engineer and auditor at the company, made similar claims, saying that “Spirit has a culture of not wanting to look for or to find problems.” According to Dean, the company “undercounted or manipulated the documentation of defects to create the appearance of quality improvement.” Dean had repeatedly alerted his managers of misdrilled holes on the 737 Max aft pressure bulkhead, describing it as the “worst finding” he had discovered during his time as auditor. Months later, Spirit fired Dean on what he claims were “demonstrably false grounds.” Instead, he believes the real reason he was fired was “to intimidate other Spirit employees so that they would not speak out as…[he] had done about the mis-drilled bulkhead holes defect.”

Under constant pressure to get products out the door as fast as possible, many employees say that they’re being pushed to work too many hours. A former Spirit employee observes that “Auditors were overworked and spread thin, which led to significant frustration.” Meanwhile, “Mechanics were repeatedly required to work mandatory weekend overtime, and 60-70 hour weeks, which angered many mechanics,” reads the lawsuit.

“We have planes all over the world that have issues that nobody has found because of the pressure Spirit has put on employees to get the job done so fast,” Cornell Beard, president of the Machinist union that represents Spirit’s employees, told the Wall Street Journal. This isn’t the first time union workers have voiced safety concerns. Previously, union workers have opposed self-inspections, a technique advocated by Spirit and Boeing. Workers said that having a separate inspector, as opposed to conducting the inspection themselves, is crucial for reducing the risk of accidents.

Boeing, Spirit AeroSystems pushed for weaker regulations

Since 2020, “Boeing and Spirit’s political action committees and employees have together reported spending more than $65 million on lobbying and federal campaign contributions,” according to a report published in Jacobin. Over the years, the two companies have successfully lobbied lawmakers to weaken safety regulations. Spirit AeroSystems, which makes 70% of the Max, saw its revenue decline 58 percent in 2020 after the aircraft was grounded.

In response, lawmakers bankrolled by the manufacturer pressed the government to recertify the Max as soon as possible. Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS), a top recipient of campaign contributions from Spirit, asked “the incoming CEO at Boeing and the FAA Administrator…to work together and do everything necessary to get the 737 Max safely back in the air.” Congressman Ron Estes (R-KS) also sent a letter to the FAA arguing that the “[t]he process of recertifying the 737 Max continues to have negative repercussions.”

A New York Times investigation found that Boeing was behind a 2018 law that made it “harder for regulators to review Boeing’s work.” Boeing representatives also sit on the FAA’s Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee (ARAC), an industry committee. In 2017, a year before the first Max crash, ARAC asked the FAA to “eliminate or scale back dozens of safety rules,” the Associated Press reported.

Boeing and Spirit AeroSystems did not respond to requests for comment.

CORRECTION: This article has been updated with the correct date of the Boeing incident; it occurred on January 5th, not January 9th.

Special Counsel Moves To Ban Trump From Arguing WITCH HUNT In Election Interference Case

Also, blaming it on the feds, antifa, or China.

Special counsel Jack Smith

Special counsel Jack Smith

On Wednesday, Special Counsel Jack Smith asked the court to put the kibosh on Donald Trump’s efforts to “turn the courtroom into a forum in which he propagates irrelevant disinformation.” If Judge Tanya Chutkan grants this motion, it will eviscerate the former president’s plan to defend himself in DC by making the case about anything other than his plot to obstruct the congressional certification of President Biden’s 2020 victory.

Broadly speaking, Trump wants to make the election interference trial into a glorified segment of Steve Bannon’s podcast. As he screams WITCH HUNT on social media, his lawyers accuse Biden of weaponizing the Justice Department and seek to introduce evidence of every crackpot election theory ever aired on Newsmax.

Unsurprisingly, the prosecution would like to avoid all that, so the special counsel has filed a motion to block Trump from bombarding the jurors with irrelevant and prejudicial evidence. And because Smith takes no prisoners, he’s done it in the most aggressive way possible.

Trump’s plan

Since before the indictment even dropped in August, Trump screamed daily that Biden was directing the Justice Department to persecute him. He also claimed that Biden is controlling the New York criminal and civil cases, as well as the RICO case in Georgia. He never presents any evidence of this because it’s patently ridiculous. The DOJ has no control over state prosecutions, and the entire purpose of the special counsel statute is to remove investigations that pose a conflict of interest from the immediate control of the DOJ.

Nevertheless, Trump, his lawyers, and right-wing media outlets have treated it as a fact that the prosecution is politically motivated and made it the centerpiece of their defense both in and out of court.

“Look what’s happening to our beautiful country,” Trump attorney John Lauro complained to Fox News’s Sandra Smith and John Roberts back in July. “For the first time in our history, a sitting president is using the Department of Justice to go after a political opponent criminally, while that political opponent is leading in the polls.”

Their legal filings are scarcely more subtle. In October, Trump filed a motion to dismiss the case based on “selective and vindictive prosecution” — essentially a claim that the DOJ indicted him solely to kneecap Biden’s 2024 opponent.

The motion itself is a farcical hash of anonymously sourced articles from the supposedly fake news Washington Post and New York Times alleging that Biden confided to his inner circle that he wished AG Garland would be more aggressive. Both stories confirm that Biden stayed far away from the Trump cases, even before Garland handed them off to Smith to avoid the appearance of conflict. Trump’s motion also mangles a quote from a press conference to suggest that “Biden’s publicly stated objective is to use the criminal justice system to incapacitate President Trump, his main political rival and the leading candidate in the upcoming election.” (That’s not remotely what he said.)

Even the most mundane scheduling brief is larded with assertions that “the incumbent administration has targeted its primary political opponent — and a leading candidate in the upcoming presidential election — with criminal prosecution.”

As the special counsel points out in his reply, it’s virtually impossible to meet the legal standard for selective or vindictive prosecution. There’s a strong “presumption of regularity” concerning prosecutors’ motives, and handwaving about anonymously sourced articles isn’t going to cut it. Trump’s lawyers know this, which is why they only spent 11 pages on their doomed petition. But their constant repetition of these unfounded claims makes it clear that, even after this worthless motion gets tossed, they intend to rely on them at trial.

Their discovery demands hint at several other smoke bombs they intend to set off to distract the jury. For instance, a motion filed in November seeks to force the special counsel to disclose theoretically exculpatory evidence about government provocateurs, supposed wrongdoing by the January 6 Committee, and the possibility that a foreign government did hack the 2020 election.

After the obligatory chant that “the indictment, in this case, reflects little more than partisan advocacy designed to sabotage President Trump’s leading campaign for the 2024 President Election,” the brief touches on every MAGA conspiracy from Executive Order 13848 to Ray Epps and demands that the DOJ produce proof to back it up.

A bank robber cannot defend himself by blaming the bank’s security guard for failing to stop him. A fraud defendant cannot claim to the jury that his victims should have known better than to fall for his scheme. And the defendant cannot argue that law enforcement should have prevented the violence he caused and the obstruction he intended.

The November motion mutters darkly about “undercovers and informants who infiltrated the crowd” on January 6, while demanding all evidence that “a range of additional foreign actors — including Lebanese Hizballah, Cuba, and Venezuela — took some steps to attempt to influence the election.” Trump also wants the DOJ to turn over granular, raw intelligence collected by the intelligence community, much of it classified, so that he can suggest that China did hack the election. That last one is particularly bonkers since Trump’s lawyers are demanding stuff their client never saw as a means to establish that he rationally believed the election was stolen.

Trump’s lawyers know perfectly well that they’re not going to get those documents, but they’re broadcasting their plan to try to flimflam the jury with irrelevant nonsense about a stolen election. Luckily, the special counsel is broadcasting his plan to head this strategy off at the pass.

The special counsel’s motion

“Through public statements, filings, and argument in hearings before the Court, the defense has attempted to inject into this case partisan political attacks and irrelevant and prejudicial issues that have no place in a jury trial,” Special Counsel Smith argued in a pretrial motion filed Wednesday. “Although the Court can recognize these efforts for what they are and disregard them, the jury — if subjected to them — may not.”

Prosecutors accuse Trump of attempting to engage in jury nullification, that is, securing an acquittal by convincing jurors to disregard the evidence and law in favor of their personal feelings of justice. They argue that “the defendant should be precluded from raising irrelevant political issues” which might “improperly suggest to the jury that it should base its verdict on something other than the evidence at trial.”

Toward that end, they seek to exclude a broad swath of evidence that maps almost perfectly onto Trump’s motions to compel and to dismiss for selective prosecution.

Noting that “[a] selective-prosecution claim is not a defense on the merits to the criminal charge itself,” they urge the court to bar any mention of partisan prosecutorial targeting, “whether in the form of argument or through the use of terminology such as the ‘Injustice Department,’ ‘Biden Indictment,’ or similar phrases — in the presence of the jury.”

In the same vein, they’d like a ban on any line of questioning that is designed to get a witness to impugn the motives of the special counsel or to suggest prosecutorial misconduct. And Trump shouldn’t be able to backdoor this argument by dressing it up as evidence that the trial is a great hardship for him when he’s running for office.

Prosecutors want to bar arguments relating to foreign election interference — the “China loves Biden” stuff — because there’s never been any evidence that Trump relied on it, and “such evidence will be irrelevant to the defendant’s mens rea and will only distract the jury from the issues properly before it.”

The special counsel would like to exclude any effort to blame the January 6 riot on Capitol police, Nancy Pelosi, or undercover government agents because “the defendant cannot argue that law enforcement should have prevented the violence he caused and obstruction he intended.”

Jack Smith is a damn good lawyer

The motion is another bold move by a prosecutor who hasn’t taken his foot off the accelerator since he was appointed on November 18, 2022, two days after Trump announced his 2024 candidacy. If Trump were an introspective man, he might consider where he’d be if he hadn’t been so intent on beating his hapless primary rivals to the punch that he forced the ever-cautious Attorney General Merrick Garland to hand the investigations off to a wildly aggressive prosecutor to avoid a conflict of interest.

Would there be any realistic possibility that these cases might go to trial before the election if Trump had just held off a few more weeks on announcing?

Probably not. But of course, Trump is not a man given to introspection, so instead, he simply throws ketchup at the online wall.

 

DJT on Truth Social

Trump’s eruption is based on his lawyers’ claim that the stay of deadlines in the election case makes it “illegal” for the prosecution to do anything at all. Since Judge Chutkan accepted his demand to put the case on ice while Trump makes his preposterous claims of presidential immunity to the DC Circuit, the government has continued to produce discovery and file its motions. Trump’s lawyers reacted with their usual histrionics, accusing the prosecutors of trying the former president “in absentia.” Without waiting for the court’s response, the special counsel filed another evidentiary motion Wednesday morning — an aggressive move that an institutionalist like AG Garland would almost certainly have eschewed.

No doubt Team Trump will be back with another round of yelling about “illegal” filings before long. But the prosecutors’ motion imposes no obligation on Trump to respond, so it seems unlikely that Judge Chutkan will reprimand the government for filing it, much less remove it from the record. That leaves Trump in an uncomfortable position. Having insisted that he cannot be burdened with litigation while he appeals the immunity issue, he can either leave this motion, which undercuts every aspect of his defense, unrebutted, or he can answer it with an “illegal” filing of his own that advances the stayed litigation.

Sucks to back yourself into a corner, doesn’t it?

Speaker Mike Johnson wants to end your right to birth control

By Thom Hartmann

Speaker Mike Johnson wants to end your right to birth control and, by the way, Ohio Republicans claim they’re going to ignore the state’s constitution and prosecute doctors and women who get abortions.

Christofascist Speaker Mike JohnsonWhen MAGA Mike was interviewed on Fox “News,” he feigned ignorance about his legislative votes and the bill he sponsored to outlaw birth control pills and IUDs. That’s how dishonest this guy is. Last July the House held a vote on a bill that would have put into law a woman’s right to use birth control pills and devices that are “FDA approved”: Johnson voted against it. He also co-sponsored the Life at Conception Act (HR 431), a so-called “personhood” bill, that would outlaw birth control pills and IUDs as well as in-vitro fertilization (IVF).

Slippery Mike also refuses to reveal to Congress anything about his finances: he’s using a loophole that only requires members of the House to reveal “interest-bearing” accounts, which is the case for most checking and savings accounts. Mike, however, found a bank that offers a checking account that does not pay interest, so we’ll never find out who’s financing him or how much money he has.

Along those same lines of Republicans defying the spirit of the law, GOP members of the Ohio legislature say they’re going to introduce legislation stripping from the state courts the ability to enforce the new constitutional amendment codifying the right to abortion. They claim the ballot measure only passed because of “foreign billionaires” (presumably a shot at their favorite boogeyman George Soros, aka “the International Jew”), and therefore they can ignore the will of Ohio’s voters. This is going to get interesting, and hopefully, it will help Democrats flip Ohio back to Blue.

Finally, Mike Johnson is in Paris today speaking to a conference of international right-wingers headlined by a man convicted of hate speech. As usual, they’re branding this Christofascist meeting with the word “freedom.”

<sigh>

Mike Johnson to headline Paris event aimed at global ‘right-wing alliance’

A GOP Chairman’s Tricky Hypocrisy on ‘Political’ Probes

“You know, the customer’s always right,”  Comer said wryly, of his approach to the people who elected him and now brandish conspiracy theories, vulgar photographs featuring the president and his son, Hunter, and other lies they expect him to act upon.

“I say, ‘Let me see it,’ because I want to see where the source is,” he said. “They don’t know that it’s QAnon, but it’s QAnon stuff.”

His embrace of such statements reflects how Comer has transformed himself to command the Republican war machine in Congress — becoming a high-profile example of what it takes to rise and thrive in the Fox News-fed MAGA universe. (NYTimes)

 

A GOP Chairman’s Tricky Hypocrisy on ‘Political’ Probes

While Rep. James Comer (R-KY) has been tapped to steer congressional probes into what House Republicans characterize as the “weaponization” of government investigations, Comer is no stranger to weaponizing politically driven investigations. Last week, Comer and Rep.

When You Want to Annihilate Everyone Else in Society, Maybe the Problem Is…You

Hate is a strong claim, and yet it’s easy enough to see, or at least it should be, that in the manifold attacks on basic freedoms above, isn’t just the subtext of hate… But the real thing. Open calls for “eradication,” speaking about those of who are just pleading for decency as if we’re a “virus.” If all this isn’t hate, then what is? Surely hate doesn’t have only to be the next step, which is genuine material annihilation. It begins here.

Why Do the Fascists Hate Everyone So, So Much?

There’s a question which I keep asking these days. Maybe you do, too. It’s simple enough, and yet it’s surprisingly complicated, strange, and…ugly. Why do they hate us? You know what I mean already. Just think of the state of the nation or the world. It’s being rocked by fascist tides again.

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